Summer Quarter 2023 in Indonesia

Second Annual Field Course at Cagar Alum Pangandaran


2024 applications are now being accepted for our field site at Pangandaran Nature Reserve in West Java, Indonesia

  Beach at research site  Ebony Monkey in Tree

The Indonesia Field Study Program on Tinjil Island welcomed the first cohort of Indonesian students in 1991. The interdisciplinary educational program then expanded in 1995 to welcome the first cohort of international (American) students, to study alongside their Indonesian counterparts. Dr. Matthew Novak was an undergraduate and part of that first American cohort. Since then, the program has continued to welcome students from all over Asia, the United States, and Europe. Today, the Indonesia Field Study Program continues as a study abroad opportunity for students from the United States, primarily COCC, and elsewhere in collaboration with the Pusat Studi Satwa Primata (Primate Research Center, PSSP) at the Institut Pertanian Bogor (IPB University, IPB) in Bogor, West Java, Indonesia.

The program is designed to provide field-based educational, training, and research opportunities for individuals interested in conservation psychology, biology, animal behavior, primatology, environmental science, and global health. Students, staff, and professionals from COCC and partnering institutions (e.g., University of Washington, Trinity University, College of Coastal Georgia) may participate in the Indonesian Field Study Program conducted at PSSP-IPB affiliated field sites and facilities in Indonesia.

Map of Indonesia

The 2024 Indonesia Field Study Program will take place at Cagar Alum Pangandaran which is a nature reserve located along the southern shore of Java, near the border between west and central Java.

Map of Java

 Map of Region

Cagar Alum Pangandaran

Satellite Image of Research Location

Native fauna includes Longtailed macaque monkeys (Macaca fascicularis), Javan Langurs (Trachypithecus auratus), and Red Deer (Cervus timorensis), pictured left to right below, and a number of other mammal, bird, and reptile species. In addition, there is a wide variety of insects and crustacea. This nature reserve offers an excellent setting in which to gain field study experience and conduct field research.

Longtailed Macaque Monkey Javan Langurs Red Deer

During the program, students, staff, and professionals from IPB and affiliated institutions also participate in the program courses and/or conduct independent research projects at the reserve. This joint participation offers a unique opportunity for cultural exchange and awareness and enables further development of foreign language competency among the participants from both countries.

The Indonesia Field Study Program provides an excellent opportunity for participants to experience first-hand the demands and rewards of living and conducting research in tropical field conditions. This program is emotionally and physically demanding and requires strong commitment and motivation on the part of the participants. Individuals with a sincere interest in research and an appreciation of foreign cultures should find this program an exciting, challenging, and ultimately a rewarding experience. To date, over 100 students from the University of Washington, Central Oregon Community College, and other U.S. colleges and universities have participated in this program. In the 12 years that Dr. Novak has been running this program at COCC, 16 COCC students have participated, making 17 trips. Our initial participant was Judd Rush in 2012. Our second student, Katie Rutledge (who went on to win the Avon Mayfield Award, recently received her master’s degree from Mills College), made the trip in 2014. In 2015, Katie participated a second time, along with 3 other students, Erin Butler, David Lee, and Sarah Zobrist. In 2017, another group of students was able to make the trip, Gabby Bangert, Reilly King, and Miranda Harrison. Gabby Bangert was able to use the program to connect with her ancestral roots as some of her family are Indonesian. Miranda Harrison submitted her field study project from our program to her 4-year college, Hampshire College, and won a young investigator award that provided her with a scholarship to complete her 4-year degree. Just recently, Miranda accepted a field research fellowship in Kuala Lumpur. David Lee and Erin Butler have both gone on to travel extensively in Southeast Asia. David even travelled to one of our affiliated field sites in Thailand and participated in an equivalent program in that country before moving to Western Australia where he lived and worked for a few years before returning to Bend. Erin taught surfing in Southeast Asia for a time and earned her bachelor’s degree in Outdoor Leadership from Southern Oregon University.